Goosewing Ranch

Autumn in Jackson Hole

Well the summer tourist season has drawn to a close.  It was another spectacular summer in the Jackson Hole area, and throughout Yellowstone.  But not all travelers have left and there certainly are locals still in the area… so what is there to do in Jackson during the fall shoulder season?   Well, there is a lot to do.

Goosewing Ranch closed to guests on September 23 for the 2012 summer season, but we are still at the ranch finishing projects and already preparing for 2013.  Without all the families on the ranch to take horseback riding we have some down time to really enjoy the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem.

Hunting, fishing, hiking, and great deals are just a few of the things you can experience in Jackson Hole Wyoming during the autumn months.  Flights into Jackson Hole Airport are usually a little less expensive and all restaurants and hotels are offering discounted rates and deals.  The area itself is beautiful also.  The aspen trees are in full color, and the wildlife is abundant whether you are shooting them with a  camera, bow, or riffle.  Hunting is a big part of our local economy and it brings many thrill seekers to the area.  Contact a local guiding service or check out for more information.  Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks also offer great touring opportunities.   With fewer tourists in the area you can travel through the parks with ease.  This is also a great time of year for hiking with cooler temps and spectacular views, but remember the wildlife is preparing for winter so tread with caution.  Fishing is still excellent also.  The steams are easily accessible and the trout are hungry.  With temps ranging for 65 degrees during the day down below freezing at night you will want to pack a variety of options.  But get out and enjoy the spectacular weather the autumn in the Tetons brings.

Make sure you check local listings for off season hours and specials, and also check with the local parks because each entrance and most venders have different dates of operation.  Remember not all of Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks are open all year.  If you like cooler weather, great deals, fall colors, small crowds, and lots of wildlife and scenery viewing then checkout the Jackson Hole area.  Most of the people in the area this time of year are hunters, locals, and singles or couples so pack a bag and enjoy the off season touring the Tetons.   I know those of us at Goosewing Ranch and in the Gros Ventre LOVE this time of year!


From our head wrangler, Kris…

Well another spring has arrived and life on the ranch is as exciting as ever. The tack room is cleaned, and ready for a fun filled summer of horseback adventures into the Wyoming back country. We have 62 head of horses on the ranch, with mostly familiar faces, but a few new ones to learn. The horses have all wintered well and are looking fit for our guests. It is always a happy reunion when the horses return, both for them and the wranglers. We all get a good laugh watching them wonder around the ranch showing the new horses the routine of their life on a guest ranch.
All of the horses have been ridden and taken out on different trails into the Gros Ventre wilderness and Bridger-Teton National Forest. The new Goosewing Ranch wranglers are as fun to watch as the new horses. They are in awe of the terrain and vistas surrounding the ranch and on the trails we ride. They all are excited to learn more about the area and the horses they will be caring for throughout the summer. Every day is a new adventure. They remind me of myself and the reasons why I started leading trail rides. With eight wranglers this year we will be able to provide excellent service and a variety of trail rides daily.
The wildlife has been abundant both on, and near the ranch and on the trail rides. We have spotted numerous herds of Elk, mule deer through the thin foliage, and watched as the antelope move back into the valley. We have also spotted wolves, badgers, grizzly bears, eagles, and a few moose. The horses have handled the wildlife spotting’s, new wranglers, and various trail conditions like old pros. One never knows what to expect in western Wyoming where we are part of the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem.
We are all looking forward to the vacation season starting in the Jackson Hole area, and can’t wait to entertain all of our guests by taking them on horseback adventures, touring Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, and enjoying all the a resort ranch has to offer. The horses are “rearing to go”, the trails are drying out, and the wranglers are saddled up and waiting for all the different guests to arrive. We still have cabins available, so, it’s not too late to book your Dude ranch vacation at Goosewing Ranch. Come and enjoy our western hospitality!

What’s Cookin’ at Goosewing Ranch…

Woohoo… We are so excited to announce that the construction on our outdoor kitchen is finally coming together.  We hope that you will agree with us that this will be a wonderful addition to the ranch.  The new kitchen area or “Gazebo” as we are referring to it, is scheduled to be completed June 1, just 2 days before we open to our guests.

This is going to be a beautiful attraction with great views into our pool area, and horse pasture.  We will be able to serve meals, drinks, and just plain entertain in this great space.  I am most excited about the brick oven that will be going in soon.  Bring on the homemade breads, pizzas, and bake goods!

Now for those of you asking about weather, temperatures, and bugs:  we will be doing our best to make this an enjoyable space all season long.  The structure will be fully roofed, with lighting, a sound system, and inferred heaters.  For the mosquitoes, we have purchased numerous types of traps and killers.  We will be spraying the area early spring/summer, as well as operating mosquito traps during the season.

Come join us for some family fun in the Gros Ventre.  Our chef, Angel Garcia, will be serving up some amazing cuisine from basic ranch style food, to more gourmet meals.  Dude Ranching in Jackson Hole Wyoming has taken a turn and better dining is at the first corner, and it is no wonder.  With all the activities to do while on vacation out West you will develop an abundant appetite.  From hiking in the Grand Tetons, touring through Yellowstone National Park, horseback riding in the mountains surrounding Goosewing Ranch, or just relaxing at our Sleeping Indian Spa you will enjoy the delightful meals being served from our new Gazebo!

The Cowboy Hat…

They come in all shapes, sizes, heights, and colors…Some faded, some misshaped, and others perfectly formed.  What is it that is so special about a cowboys/girls hat?  To completely understand the bond between the buckaroo and their signature piece, one must understand the uses of the cowboy hat.

Unlike many other styles of hats the cowboy hat is quite functional.  With its larger brim it makes a very useful sunshade for the face, neck, and shoulders.  This same large brim also protects you when it rains or snows and you can turn your hat into the wind to protect yourself from the blowing dust storm, or hide your eyes in a poker game in Jackson Hole.  A light straw hat will keep you cool in through the Wyoming summer and a heavy felt hat will keep you warm in the winter.  Not only are hats great for protection, but they also serve a useful purpose as a bucket (we have all heard of the 10 gallon hat), or storage area…Cowboys are known for keeping pictures, poems, cash and tooth picks in their hats.  Now if you have never had the pleasure of wearing a cowboy hat and experiencing the versatility then it is hard to explain why some cowboys get so attached…Breaking in a new hat is like starting a colt.  You’re gonna have your good days and your bad days, but after you each get dirty, and take a few spills together you will be working as a team for years to come; and a cowboy never forgets his first hat or colt.

Jackson Hole has a lot great hat shops, but you don’t have to get a custom hat to fit in at Goosewing Ranch.  A good hat should fit well, be comfortable, and serve the above purposes.  I want my hat to be able to stay put on my hand while I am riding a bucking, runaway horse in a windstorm.  But, the snug hat shouldn’t cause pain or discomfort; your hat should form to the shape of your head.  A general rule of mine is if I can bend over like I am picking a horse’s foot and my hat stays on then that’s a good start.  Hats come in all shapes…some are more round with a tall crown, while others are oval with a low crown.  Each region is known for a different shape of cowboy hat, all serving the same purposes but each adding its own flare and style.  If your hat isn’t a sure fit make sure you also purchase or construct a stampede string to go along.  The stampede string secures to your hat and then is tightened under your chin to keep your hat on your head whether you’re in a wild horse chase through the mountains or just horseback riding in some mild Wyoming wind.  Most western stores have a person on staff that can help you find the perfect hat; this person usually will be able to custom shape the hat to fit your head and your personal style.  Take your time shopping, remember you and your hat will make many memories together, from galloping through the Gros Ventre, being smashed to the ground from the winds off the Grand Tetons, to surviving  the family vacation into Yellowstone National Park.  Each adventure takes you one step closer to forming that bond between cowboy and cowboy hat…Where will yours take you?

A mordern spin on an old way of life in Jackson Wyoming…

Wow… I can’t believe that the winter season is over and it is about time to open up Goosewing Ranch for another wonderful summer, and I couldn’t be more excited.

We are gearing up for a terrific summer vacation season… With lots of returning staff and a successful autumn of completing projects, this summer might just be the best yet!  The 2012 staff members will start arriving around the first week of May and continue arriving until the beginning of June.  Throughout this month staff will be trained, and facilities will be cleaned and prepared for our first guests’ arrival on June 3.  This year’s returning staff members include: Eric, the ranch foreman, Kris and Katie, head wrangler and wrangler, Will, activities director, Angel, head chef, Charlotte and Katia, lodge and housekeeping departments, and myself.  I am also very excited about the new staff members that will be spending the summer with us; they are all very enthusiastic and well qualified.  We have hired a few extra staff members for this season to better serve and meet the needs of our guests.

Aside from being well staffed, we have many new amenities available that will suite a variety of travelers.  Just because you are taking a family vacation to Wyoming and will be spending a week at a guest ranch doesn’t mean you should have to sacrifice comfort.  After a day of hiking through Grand Teton National Park, or touring the geysers of Yellowstone National Park we invite you to relax by our heated swimming pool, gaze at the star filled skies from the hot tub, or treat your muscles to time in the sauna and a massage from one of our professional therapists.  The ranch not only has a variety of ways to relax and pamper you, but we also have new ways of exploring the Brider-Teton National Forest or Gros Ventre Wilderness.  New for the 2012 season is the addition of 10 Polaris Rangers ranging in capacity from 2 – 6 seats.  Now each cabin will come with a Ranger for the convenience of our guests.  This is a great way to get out to different hiking trails, go fishing, or explore new areas without soring you butt in the saddle.  For the more adventurous types we are offering 2 and 3 day pack trips into the backcountry.  This is a true western experience with many opportunities to view wildlife and take in the vast vistas the surrounding mountain ranges have to offer.

From offering a full Spa to pack trips, and ATV rides Goosewing Ranch has something to offer any vacation traveler.  These are just a few of the new and exciting investments that the ranch is making.  Check out our website for more details or feel free to give us a call toll free at 1-888-733-5251 or 1-307-733-5251.  Don’t miss out on a vacation of a lifetime at Goosewing Ranch, call today for rates and availability.  We also are offering lots of specials mention this blog post and receive a free massage! Offer expires 4/24/2012.

All-inclusive and National Park vacations..Jackson Hole has it all!

Planning a family vacation or personal getaway can be a very overwhelming… Just deciding a region to visit is difficult. What will everyone enjoy, what is our budget, where should we go, what do we want to do, what does the area have to offer; these are just a few of the questions that help narrow the search. Then the more people and different age groups you throw into the mix only seems complicates things. When choosing a vacation for a family reunion, or just a private getaway, western Wyoming has a lot to offer…This year escape to Wyoming, where there is something for everyone!
The United States has 58 National Parks, and Wyoming is home of the Nation’s first, Yellowstone National Park. Bordering Yellowstone is Grand Teton National Park, with breath-taking mountain views, and abundant wildlife. Touring the country’s National Parks is a great way to get in touch with nature, have an educational experience, and see some of the most spectacular parts of our country. Another great option while visiting Yellowstone or Grand Teton is to visit guest or dude ranch. Ranches are typically all-inclusive vacations, including everything from taxes and gratuities to lodging, meals, and activities. Some of the basic activities one might experience on a guest ranch are horseback riding, tubing or rafting the rivers, roping, line dancing, target shooting, hiking, mountain bike riding and much more. Guest Ranches that are members of the Dude Ranchers Association are held to many high standards of service and operation. By choosing a ranch from the DRA you are practically guaranteed to have a wonderful vacation. At Goosewing Ranch we provide our guests with abundant, savory meals prepared by our in house chefs, authentic western hospitality with modern amenities, activities to keep everyone entertained, and a spa for those who wish to relax or relive sore muscles after a day of exhilarating experiences. Also, enjoy viewing wildlife in the Gros Ventre valley, or exploring the Bridger-Teton National forest on one of the Polaris Rangers. Guest ranches aren’t just horses, and barbed wire, it’s more of leather and lace, a rustic setting with resort amenities.
It is important to remember that there are many different types of vacations available out there. Why limit yourself to the same beach vacation, when you can have an all-inclusive guest ranch vacation and visit a historic National Park? Don’t think “City Slickers”, think of a true family vacation with experiences that will keep you smiling for years to come.

Wildflowers, the best in Jackson Hole…

As the snow begins to melt and I am hearing all the birds chirping throughout the day, I can’t help but dream about the wildflowers in bloom.  No matter where I see wildflowers, they always seem to take my breath away, and cause me to stop and enjoy the moment.  But, in my mind there is no comparison to the wildflowers in the Gros Ventre.

Jackson Hole, Grand Teton, and Yellowstone National Park are home to many spectacular sights and creatures; Goosewing Ranch is fortunate to be located in an area where we are surrounded by these things daily, and get a little of everything!  Wildflowers will bloom during different times of the summer depending on the elevation.  As you increase in elevation spring and summer can be slow to come into bloom, but as things dry in Jackson new life is forming in the mountains.
I have been fortunate enough to have ridden through many fields of wildflowers, and still the sheer beauty takes me by surprise…  A feeling of happiness and peace just seems to rush through me when I crest a hillside to see all the colors of summer opened to the sun.

While at Goosewing Ranch you won’t want to miss the opportunity to horseback ride, and enjoy a picnic in a field full of lupine, Indian Paint Brush (Wyoming’s State flower), Columbine, and more.  Not only are the flowers a beautiful sight and smell, but they also make for great photography opportunities.  Different flowers are blooming at different elevations throughout the summer, but the prime time to view them close to the ranch is from late June until mid-August.  The higher you venture the later you can see them.  Visit Goosewing Ranch and get more than just a vacation get an experience that will live in your heart for years to come.

Ranch Activities for all Buckaroos’

The sun is shining, the snow is melting, and it is time to get excited about summer time in Jackson Hole! Guest ranches have been around for generations, and are a great way to enjoy time with your family. With families comes kids, and with kids comes the fun! Goosewing Ranch has a great children’s program with lots of educational and entertaining activities.

We want the lil’ buckaroos on the ranch to have fun, and make lasting memories and friendships while experiencing ranching, western, and outdoor activities. We have different programs and activities for different age groups. Our kids program is designed for children ages 6 and up. We want to make sure everyone gets to try something new and experience life in western Wyoming style. All the activities are led by trained instructors.

A typical day in the Gros Ventre might consist first of the kids helping the wranglers groom and care for the horses, all while learning about horsemanship, saddling, and proper care. After tacking the horses, everyone will head out on the trail with picnic lunches in tow for a day of fun out in the Bridger-Teton National Forest, or Gros Ventre wilderness. Wranglers will lead different groups depending on ages and riding abilities. While out the groups will search for wildlife and make imprints of their tracks, learn about the local flora and fauna, and enjoy time playing trail games on the horses. Upon returning from their rides the kids can enjoy a swim in our outdoor heated pool and hot tub. After swimming there will be another scheduled activity. In true Wyoming spirit we have activities such as rifle shooting, archery, western arts and crafts, horse shoe tosses, water balloon tosses, and much more… After dinner and dessert kids can participate in a kickball game, line dancing, scavenger hunt, star gazing, fire building and roasting s’mores, or enjoy story telling about the local history, Yellowstone National Park, or mountain men, Native Americans, and cowboys. Each day there will be different rides and activities to choose from that will even keep teenagers entertained! Throughout their stay at the ranch the kids will enjoy lots of interaction with the horses and other ranch animals (steers, lambs, goats, chickens and a miniature donkey). Towards the end of the week there will be a day of wrangler and arena games where the kids can show off their roping, and riding skills in a mini rodeo. Certificates will be awarded to the cowboys and girls.

The goal of our kids program is to allow parents peace of mind knowing that their children of all ages are having fun in a safe and educational environment. We also want to provide experiences to the kids that they might not be able to get anywhere else. Hiking, horseback riding, swimming, making dream catchers, and learning different ways of having fun outdoors is just a small part of what we hope the buckaroos of all ages will enjoy. All activities are designed for family participation. Come and experience Goosewing Ranches western hospitality, and enjoy a vacation the whole family will love. Oh yeah…Mom and Dad, we have great activities for you as well… from fly fishing to relaxing at our spa, no one will be left out!

About the author…Amy Worster

Our new website is live, the ranch is filling up, and my to do list is changing from winter projects to spring projects…so, I guess it is time for me to formally introduce myself. Howdy, I am Amy DeCarolis Worster…I am the one that has been sharing my thoughts, hints, and and stories about Goosewing Ranch and ranch life.  I am also the General Manager for Goosewing Ranch.

I arrived in the Gros Ventre valley fresh out of college, and excited about a new beginning. What I didn’t know was that that new beginning would start with a 20 mile horse back ride to my new job as a wrangler. My truck broke down around lower Slide Lake, just out side the Grand Teton National Park boundary, and I did what any true cowgirl would do… No, I didn’t wave down the first passing vehicle; I unloaded my trusty horse, jumped on bareback and proceeded to my new job at Goosewing Ranch. Soon realizing that I should have looked at the map first…I didn’t realize that I was still about 20 miles from a hot shower, bed, and paycheck. Well, after riding by a few passing vehicles, and fighting off wild animals (just kidding) Sheela and I finally arrived at the most beautiful place in the West, Goosewing Ranch. I was greeted with some strange stares of fellow employees wondering if I rode this little mare all the way from Indiana. Now, Goosewing and the Jackson Hole area has become home for me and Sheela.

I have been with the ranch now for about 8 years, and have made not only lasting memories and friendships, but a life for myself that includes Goosewing Ranch. I married my best friend and partner in adventure last September on top of the mountain where we met 7 years ago, Monument Ridge. I truly enjoy showing off this beautiful area of Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton, Jackson Hole, and most of all the Bridger-Teton National forest and Gros Ventre Wilderness. I think there are times when I am more excited to show someone a spectacular mountain view on horseback than they are to see it. I am the proud momma of my four legged, pointy ear, dogs and horses, and couldn’t imagine life without them.

I hope that you will enjoy the information that will be shared, and find it helpful. Come visit the Ranch and let me show you, what I think, is the best of the West!

Great Vacation Specials…Something for Everyone!

Its the lucky month of March and time to make those final plans for a summer vacation, and Goosewing Ranch has something to offer everyone… Jackson Hole is a spectacular place, and June is a great time of year to experience Wyoming. There is abundant wildlife, Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks are open, and the area is coming to life after a long winter season.  We will give you more than a vacation, you will get an experience of a lifetime!

Celebrate Goosewing’s Opening (June 3 – 10): During the early part of June the Gros Ventre is full of life…Elk and Moose are calving, hawks and eagles are fishing in the open streams and lakes, bears are moving about, and Goosewing Ranch is OPEN!!  Book your experience and vacation now for the week of June 3 – 10 and receive 40% OFF our peak season prices.  While at the ranch you will be able to experience ranch life, ride horses, enjoy  classic ranch dinning, and be able to help us give back to the Wyoming wilderness we love so much.

Photography and Wine Paring (June 10 – 17)When you are in an area as unique and beautiful as the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem it is key to capture your vacation on film.  After a few days of photographing everything under the big Wyoming sky, there is no better way to relax than with wine that compliments good food.  Book your stay at Goosewing Ranch from June 10 – 14 and receive insights from a Professional Photographer that we will have on hand.   Enjoy all that the ranch has to offer while capturing your memories on film.  Submit a few specified photos for the ranch to use to be entered into a contest; the winner will receive a FREE 3 night stay for 2 in 2013.  Book your stay at Goosewing Ranch from June 14 – 17 and we will provide you with a trained somelier to share knowledge of paring food and wine.   Enjoy great food, and great wine from us during cocktail hour and dinner.  You can also book a complete week from June 10 – 17 and enjoy a full week of ranch livin’ and culture!

Family Reunions/Group Getaways (June 17 – 24):  Summertime is family reunion time.  Book your family reunion or group getaway with Goosewing Ranch the week of June 17 – 24 and receive a discounted group rate up to 40% OFF (depending on group size).  Goosewing Ranch has various activities to offer even the most diverse group.  The horseback riding in the Bridger-Teton National Forest and Gros Ventre wilderness is practically endless.  We have Polaris rangers for those looking to explore, hike, fish, photograph, tube the river, or just cruise the back roads.  Plus, we have lots of other activities to keep even teenagers busy…target shooting, dancing, arts and crafts, and much more.  We didn’t forget about Mom either, we also have a spa, sauna, hot tube, and heated pool.  A getaway experience that everyone will love and enjoy!

Bond with each other, bond with nature (June 24 – July 1):  Calling all Mothers and daughters, Fathers and sons, its time to get back to what matters and enjoy the company of each other.  Book your vacation with Goosewing Ranch for the week of June 24 – July 1 and receive either a FREE overnight pack trip and numerous outdoor excursions for the boys, or 2 FREE massages and 10% off our spa menu for the ladies.  Can’t stay the entire week…book a 3 or 4 night stay and receive 10% off our spa menu.  Couples and other travelers welcome to book.

Please call 1-888-733-5251 or 1-307-733-5251 for more details.  Space is limited… call now to experience the vacation special you are sure to never forget…

Offer expires April 30, packages may be subject to change.